I had an email last week from a head hunter, asking me if I wanted to try out for a role in card fraud – my old line of work.
I’ve had a fair few calls and emails over the last year since I left the industry, but generally they are down in London, a daily trek of 3 or so hours which doesn’t really fit in with the school run.
This one, however, did make me pause to think. It’s an hours daily drive, but that’s doable. It was very close to my old role, but with enough differences to make it interesting. And it was a nice little package.
Which means I had to stop and evaluate what I have now and start to think about what I really want.
What are your priorities and worries in life?
Wonga. Spondoodles. A big fat wedge of cash every month. Who doesn’t want a nice fat income to keep the house running and be able to afford sunny holidays and new shoes every month? Of course I do – it’s been a year since I had a disposable income and could happily dive into the sales without a care in the world. Take the kids on holiday, experience trips, days out, treats.
Do you worry about what life will be like when you are 75? ‘They’ say that by the time I retire, there won’t be any money left for my state pension. ‘They’ say that we have more elderly people freezing and starving every year, with a lack of cash and no one to care for them. When I retire I want to have a pension to support me in my wonder years – the years when I can go explore the world having done my 50 odd years of hard labour.
3. Family time
‘They’ (who are these mysterious people?) call it a work/life balance. It’s about working in order to be able to have a life, not living for work. It’s about being able to see your kids in the morning and feed them their breaky, being able to go to school plays and parent lunches. It’s about helping with homework. I like seeing my children at some point in the day. This is why I had kids, ya know. So I could bring them up, parent them. Not just because I wanted some non-paying pets I could feed and change occasionally.
4. Me time
Hello. I am a person. I am not a robot. I don’t just get up, work, pay taxes and go back to bed. I also want to have time to do things for myself. Have hobbies. Maybe even (don’t laugh) go to the gym. Me time!
So – if I go back to a full time job, a fair distance away. I get the cash and I get the pension. But I lose the homework time and the chance to learn how to grow my own veg. The kids go back to before and after school clubs, making their days exceptionally long. But I would be free at weekends to play instead of spending mornings working (self-emplyment apparently means working 7 days a week).
On the other hand, if I stay as I am I have some cash, no security, but I get to cheer my kids on in the pancake race and have time to develop a blog, take my mind in a different direction and try out something I always wanted to do.
What is the answer? What would you do?